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IDPH concludes, based on data reviewed, that the Cee Ja Landfill currently poses no apparent health hazard. The site may be a future potential health hazard in the future because:

  1. leachate from the landfill can enter the creek where people can contact the contamination;

  2. the landfill contamination will likely continue migrating off the site due to erosion, precipitation events, and episodes of flooding; and

  3. any resident using private wells for potable purposes could be exposed to migrating site-related contamination.

Overall, only a small number of samples have been collected at the site over the past 20 years. No consistent elevated concentrations of chemicals and groundwater contamination have not been established. Still, several questions remain concerning this site that cannot be answered with the limited data available.

The area surrounding the privately-owned site is not easily accessible. The owner lives near the entrance and has restricted access to the property with a fence and gate. However, several inspectors observed leachate from the landfill moving into the creek for several years. IDPH does not know if the creek or nearby ponds are used for fishing, swimming, or recreation.

Disparities exist between the laboratory results of duplicate soil samples X102 and X103. This sample was split in the field to create what should have been two very similar contaminant profiles. Instead, vastly different values were found for VOCs, for SVOCs, and for metals. Also, the background soil sample (X101) has a some trace VOC levels and some elevated metal concentrations. The activities of the nearby auto salvage yard and the large number of junk automobiles stored next to the landfill may be a contributing factor.

The traces of pesticides detected are not likely site related but are representative of the agricultural chemicals used in area operations. Laboratory tests were run on two nearby private wells in 1986, and no pesticides were detected. Samples analyzed in 1995 contained some values over the laboratory detection limits, but none at levels above comparison values.



To determine if groundwater contamination is occurring due to the existence of this poorly-engineered landfill, IDPH recommends additional monitoring of on-site and off-site media at the Cee Ja landfill site and auto salvage yard. If other sampling events are planned for the future, they should include:

  1. sampling of on-site groundwater;

  2. sampling of surface waters;

  3. surveys and sampling of off-site wells, including residential and public wells;

  4. surface and subsurface soil sampling to determine the extent of contamination in areas where contamination is evident.

IDPH will review any future data generated from sampling of this site.



Catherine Copley
Environmental Toxicologist
Illinois Department of Public Health



  1. IEPA Bureau of Land Pollution (1996). Freedom of Information file search, January, 1996, Springfield, Illinois.

  2. IEPA Site Assessment Unit (1997) Mark Weber, Illinois Environmental Protection Agency. Personal communications.

  3. IEPA (1997) Personal communication with Ken Mensing of the IEPA Collinsville Regional Office.

  4. IEPA (1996) Illinois Water Quality Report 1994-1995. Volume I. Bureau of Water. IEPA/BOW/96-060a. Springfield, Illinois. September 1996.

  5. IEPA Site Inspection Report (1984) IEPA Collinsville (McCarthy) and USEPA (E & E) April 23, 1984.

  6. Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) (1988) Letter to IEPA regarding Cee Ja and study for I-255. November 28, 1988.

  7. IDOT (1989) EIS Plates for I-255 location study.

  8. Fosterburg Water District (1997) Personal communication with district manager, Dorothy Cook with Catherine Copley, IDPH. June 16, 1997.

  9. IEPA (1975) Division of Land Pollution Control. Sampling results of three surface water samples (leachate and two creek samples) by P.M. McCarthy, January 1975.

  10. IEPA (1986) Division of Land Pollution Control. Sampling results of two private wells by Brent Harris, June 24, 1986.

  11. IEPA (1995) Division of Land Pollution Control. CERCLA Site Inspection Prioritization (SIP) for U.S. EPA. Sampling May 9 and 10, 1995 and report written by IEPA Site Assessment Unit staff Mark Weber.

  12. Ecology and Environment, Inc. for U.S. EPA (1991) ESI Prioritization Questionnaire. Prepared by Anna Talevski on September 19, 1991. Contractor to U.S. EPA in Chicago, Region V office.

  13. Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (1997). Health Guidelines and Environmental Media Comparison Values. March 1997.

  14. IEPA (1994). A Summary of Selected Background Conditions for Inorganics in Soil (IEPA/ENV/94-161). Office of Chemical Safety. August 1994.

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